Excerpt from Step Thirteen: Soul of the Foot

From the Home Front
At the end of every vacation, Mike and I arrive home to a stack of neglected demands, a consequence of forsaking daily routine for travel. Even when we return on time, in good health, and find our home undamaged, our loved ones well, and our key where the young neighbor who collects our mail is supposed to leave it, we feel dragged down by piles of “have tos” and waves of homecoming hassles that threaten to drown our post-vacation elation.

But after trekking over one hundred miles, I feel less daunted by the usual flood of obligations. Strengthened and refreshed by weeks of rambling, I stand ready to confront: two cartons filled with mail and catalogs, scores of email messages (no matter that before I left home I asked friends to cease and desist), piles of laundry, an empty refrigerator, a duffel bag to unpack, and gear to stow for another ramble.

It may take a while, but, having completed a long countryside walk, I feel confident that I’ll also make it to the end of my lists. And while I’m checking things off, I’ll be operating familiar plumbing and sleeping in the same bed every night. How hard can that be?


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